Care Ethics and Confucianism: Caring through Li

Hypatia 30 (4):881-896 (2015)
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The role of li, or ritual, in Confucianism is a perceived impediment to interpreting Confucianism to share a similar ethical framework with care ethics because care ethics is a form of moral particularism. I argue that this perception is false. The form of moral particularism promoted by care ethicists does not entail the abandonment of social conventions such as li. On the contrary, providing good care often requires employing systems of readily recognizable norms in order to ensure that care is successfully communicated and completed through one's care-giving practices. I argue that li performs this communicative function well and that the early Confucians recommend breaching li precisely when its efficacy in performing this function is compromised.



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Kelly Epley
University of Oklahoma

Citations of this work

Towards an Aristotelian Theory of Care.Steven Steyl - 2019 - Dissertation, University of Notre Dame Australia

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